Best cars for Christmas

If your current car won’t cut it for the Christmas rush, try one of these great offers, or find the perfect gift for a loved one

Sam Naylor
Dec 2, 2021

Christmas is fast approaching, presents are filling the spare room and it's time to pack to go and see loved ones. But will that shiny red wheelbarrow for Dad actually fit in the car? And what about the giant turkey? It might be time for a bigger car or even an SUV.

Perhaps Christmas 2021 is really special, and you've decided it's time to treat the family to a new car entirely, but it's difficult to decide which one amongst all the other festive decisions.

Either way, you’re in the right place - here we’ve rounded up eight of the best second-hand cars for Christmas. All are practical enough to deal with the nightmare scenario above, yet desirable enough to work well as a gift if you're feeling super generous.

We’ve stuck to models that are available for less than £30,000 with relatively affordable PCP finance monthly payments available. This also means we’ll be avoiding cars that aren’t good value - that’s likely to be a key factor for anyone buying a car at any time of year, let alone at Christmas.

Yet our choices will also cater for different needs. Some models are practical above all else, some are particularly good to drive and others are extremely cheap to run. Most are a combination of all three, and when you add in a low price and a good level of standard equipment, that’s the formula for good value.

All the cars we’ve chosen are available right now on BuyaCar, so click on the button above to start your search and find a model that’s perfect for you, or for whoever you’re buying for.

Best cars for Christmas

1. Renault Captur

Best small SUV for Christmas

Our pick Renault Captur 1.0 TCe 100 S Edition
Used deals Limited stock

The Renault Captur is a fantastic crossover, though be sure to buy a 2020-onwards model if you want the best, because previous versions weren’t quite as good. It’s really well equipped, good to drive and practical enough for a small family.

The latest version of Renault’s small SUV has a pleasant interior with good quality materials and a modern touchscreen media system. It’s not a big car, yet has a nice large boot and enough room in the back seats even for teenagers.

We'd opt for the 1.0-litre petrol because it’s likely to return good fuel economy and offers a decent amount of punch. It’s also quiet and easy to drive with the manual gearbox. The Renault is comfortable as well, so it should make long trips that bit more bearable - though it’s best suited to more local journeys.

RENAULT CAPTUR BUYERS' GUIDE

2. Skoda Superb Estate

Best big car for Christmas

Our pick Skoda Superb Estate 1.5 TSI SE L
Used deals from £15,000
Monthly finance from £0*

The Skoda Superb lives up to its name easily. It’s an absolute bargain when it comes to the amount of space inside for the price, but almost every other aspect of the car is great as well. For practicality, there’s little that gets better, especially the Estate version (though the hatchback is nearly as practical, as it has a large hatchback boot and wide boot opening, too).

There’s more legroom in the back seats of a Superb than in some much larger cars, and the seats are comfy too. It’s perfect for older relatives to get settled in on long trips and there’s no teenager tall enough to complain about a lack of legroom in this Skoda.

The Superb is smooth, quiet, comfortable and efficient as well. The 1.4-litre petrol model is very quiet but diesels are more efficient on long trips, so choose the latter if you do lots of lengthy journeys. The interior isn’t the most exciting to look at but it’s functional and hard-wearing, so suits family life really well.

SKODA SUPERB ESTATE BUYERS' GUIDE

3. Citroen Grand C4 SpaceTourer

Best people carrier for Christmas

Our pick Citroen Grand C4 SpaceTourer 1.2 PureTech 130 Flair
Used deals from £13,400
Monthly finance from £0*

If you have a big family or need to bring some extended family members along for the ride this Christmas, then the Citroen Grand C4 SpaceTourer is a great option. This seven-seater people carrier is more spacious than most seven-seater SUVs and while the rearmost seats will be a squeeze for adults, they’re fine for kids.

There’s still a large boot as well, and if you don’t actually need seven seats then you can fold down the rearmost ones and gain even more space for presents. Access to the back is excellent thanks to wide-opening doors and headroom is excellent as well.

The Grand C4 SpaceTourer gets plenty else right as well - it’s very comfortable and quiet on the motorway, for example. The engines are good - we’ve picked a petrol but the diesel options are good too - and deliver decent fuel economy. There are automatic and manual gearbox options - go for the one that’s the better deal if you don't have a preference as both are fine.

CITROEN GRAND C4 SPACETOURER BUYERS' GUIDE

4. Nissan Leaf

Best electric car for Christmas

Our pick Nissan Leaf e+ 62kWh N-Tec
Used deals from £24,000
Monthly finance from £0*

If you’re ready to jump into life with an electric car, you can’t go wrong with a Nissan Leaf. We’ve picked the ‘e+’ 62kWh version here, though the 40kWh model with a smaller battery is just as good - it’s just that the e+ can go further on a single charge.

The e+ can drive for almost 240 miles in one go, while the normal Leaf can keep going for nearly 170 miles per charge. If you charge up at home then the Leaf represents a fantastic way to save money on fuel, whichever one you choose. Fast charging should be available at many motorway services on the way home for Christmas, too.

The Leaf is a good electric car because it’s also a good car - it’s comfortable, very quiet and has plenty of space for passengers and luggage. It’s especially easy to get on with in traffic jams as there’s no annoying engine noise and it’s easy to drive smoothly with no gears to worry about and instant response from the accelerator.

NISSAN LEAF BUYERS' GUIDE

5. Ford Fiesta

Best small car for Christmas

Our pick Ford Fiesta 1.0 EcoBoost Titanium
Used deals from £10,949
Monthly finance from £216*

The Ford Fiesta is a brilliant choice of car if you’re looking for a gift because there are very few people who won’t fall for its charms - it has something for everyone. It’s not the most practical car, but if you want a small car then it’s good enough.

Those who love driving will be very happy with a Fiesta - it’s one of the most fun cars on the road no matter which model you pick, from the turbocharged 1.0-litre models up to the fast Fiesta ST. It’s also really comfortable, so those who prefer a more relaxed car will love it too.

The Ford is efficient, so those who like to save money will be happy, and it has lots of standard kit, so tech fans will be right at home. Finally, just about anyone will be happy with the price, because Ford sells so many, costs are very competitive and you should be able to find one that suits your budget.

FORD FIESTA BUYERS' GUIDE

6. Volkswagen Golf

Best all-round car for Christmas

Volkswagen Golf front three quarters view

Our pick Volkswagen Golf 1.0 TSI Life
Used deals Limited stock

The Volkswagen Golf would probably be our choice if an alien came down to Earth and asked for an example of a car - it does everything just right, and appeals to just about anyone and everyone. It’s from one of the most reputable car brands, and also great value when you’re after one of the best used cars on a finance deal.

The Golf is good to drive, comfortable and there is a huge variety of engines - from efficient-yet-fun 1.0-litre versions right up to the rocketship Golf R, which has over 300hp and is one of the fastest hot hatchbacks around. There’s even an electric e-Golf.

The VW is practical too, with a big boot and plenty of room for passengers. There’s all the latest tech inside including kit for connecting your smartphone, such as Android Auto and Apple CarPlay and luxuries such as heated seats. There’s lots of choice so it’s easy to find the perfect one for your needs this Christmas.

VOLKSWAGEN GOLF BUYERS' GUIDE

7. BMW X3

Best upmarket SUV for Christmas

Our pick BMW X3 xDrive20d xLine
Used deals from £16,800
Monthly finance from £0*

If you want an SUV that’s particularly good for motorway trips with the family on board, consider a BMW X3. It’s roomy enough to work well as a family car, and has enough boot space for all this year’s presents too.

Plus, the X3 is comfy and settled at motorways speeds, and the diesel engine in the xDrive20d model will be reasonably economical on long trips as well. It’s a punchy engine and keeps things relaxed when you’re behind the wheel, too.

The BMW is a great place to spend time thanks to its upmarket cabin and plentiful technology. BMW’s sat-nav setup is very good and should deliver you to your Christmas destination without any issues.

BMW X3 BUYERS' GUIDE

8. Dacia Sandero

Best cheap car for Christmas

Our pick Dacia Sandero 1.0 TCe Comfort
Used deals Limited stock

What if you’ve spent nearly all your money for this year and don’t have much left for a Christmas car? The Dacia Sandero is worth a look if you have a limited budget, because even new or nearly new versions are much, much cheaper than many alternatives.

The Sandero is a practical small car with five doors, a big boot and low running costs, so it’s not all about the low price. The interior is basic, but it’s comfy enough, and while it’s not much fun to drive, there’s a charm to the Dacia because it’s such a cheap car.

If you can afford it, we think high-spec Comfort makes the most sense as it comes with the most kit, with luxuries including keyless entry, LED headlights and a reversing camera, and is still much cheaper than similar sized cars like the Renault Clio.

READ MORE ABOUT THE 2021 DACIA SANDERO

*Representative PCP finance - Ford Fiesta:

48 monthly payments of £192
Deposit: £0
Mileage limit: 8,000 per year
Optional final payment to buy car: £2,923
Total amount payable to buy car: £11,926
Total cost of credit: £2,426
Amount borrowed: £9,500
APR: 9.9%

Buyacar is a credit broker, not a lender. Our rates start from 6.9% APR. The rate you are offered will depend on your individual circumstances.

 

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